Illinois State Board seeks real estate consultant

The investment board, which manages $11.8 billion in pension assets, has launched a search for a firm to help the system reach a target allocation of 10 percent in the asset class.

The Illinois State Board of Investment (ISBI) issued a request for proposals today for real estate investment consultants to assist the board in the continued development and diversification of its real estate portfolio.

The winning consultant would provide a range of services, including strategic real estate consulting, which would involve working with ISBI’s staff and general consultant to develop a real estate portfolio strategy consistent with the board’s overall investment goals, as well as monitoring of the real estate portfolio and achieving portfolio targets.

The board, which has a 10 percent target allocation for real estate, has invested approximately $280 million in commingled funds, $492 million in real estate separate accounts and $196 million in other vehicles. ISBI also has an additional $136 million of capital that has been committed to the asset class but has yet to be drawn down. Real estate equity investments include $300 million to a separate account with CBRE Global Investors and $180 million to JPMorgan Asset Management’s JPMorgan Strategic Property Fund. ISBI had allocated about $1 billion, or 8.6 percent, of its total portfolio to real estate as of 30 September.

Additionally, the consultant is expected to help ISBI to source real estate deals and conduct due diligence on prospective investments. Other responsibilities will include database management and quarterly performance reporting of the board’s real estate portfolio. Proposals are due to the board’s staff by 14 December, with finalists expected to be notified by 14 March 2013.

The board is a state agency responsible for managing and investing the pension assets of the Illinois General Assembly Retirement System, the Judges’ Retirement System of Illinois and the State Employees’ Retirement System of Illinois. ISBI’s net assets were $11.8 billion as of 30 September.